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TGIF EDITION: It's a bit nipply here this  morning on the rock....not a day for antenna work....

SUNSPOT COUNTS HIT A 9-YEAR HIGH: In a continued sign of strength for Solar Cycle 25, sunspot counts just hit a 9-year high. This plot from NOAA shows how the monthly sunspot number skyrocketed in January 2023:

The monthly sunspot number of 144 in January 2023 was only percentage points away from topping the previous solar cycle, Solar Cycle 24, which peaked in Feb. 2014 with a monthly value of 146.

Originally, forecasters thought Solar Cycle 25 would be about the same as Solar Cycle 24, one of the weakest solar cycles in a century. Current trends suggest Solar Cycle 25 will surpass that low threshold, at least. Solar Maximum is not expected until 2024 or 2025, so it has plenty of time to strengthen further, bringing X-flares, geomagnetic storms and auroras. You can follow the progression here

For amateur radio club, practice makes perfect

WASHINGTON — For members of the Washington Area Amateur Radio Club (WAARC,) biannual contests represent both a thrill and an important exercise. On national radio field days every summer and winter, the group sets up camp and spends 24 uninterrupted hours making as many contacts as possible around the world.

Club member Lloyd Thornburg said the group served as both a hobby and a form of emergency response infrastructure. If communications between actors like hospitals, governments and emergency responders fail from any kind of disaster, the WAARC can step in and fill the gap with their own portable, off-grid equipment.

“We can get a signal in and out of the country,” Thornburg said. “When everything else fails, HAM radio works. They were the first ones to report the earthquake in Alaska in the ‘60s.”

WAARC President Mark Lukins said events like the field day served as more than a friendly competition. The race to make contact with other operators gives participants hands-on practice with the call signs, protocol and technology they’d use in an emergency.

“You work on listening skills,” he said. “There’s a lot of people on there all at the same time. You’ve got to pick out call signs, you’ve got to be able to hear the exchanges.”

Lukins said the twice-a-year timing came with seasonal challenges to ensure year-round preparedness.

“In the summertime we use stakes in the ground … we can’t do that in the winter time because the ground’s froze,” he said. “In the winter time, we kind of put our Plan B in effect … out here, on a trailer. We have other antennas that are mounted on truck hubs that are really, really heavy. You don’t need to have guys out there to hold them in place.”

For some members, emergency response is the hobby’s primary appeal. WAARC Vice President John Bush said the skills brought a sense of security, since they offer access to news and communication when cellphones and internet are off the table.

“I believe in being prepared and independent,” he said. “I’m not a ‘prepper,’ per say, like you’d see out on YouTube. But I’m originally from California, which is earthquake country. It was a very real thing, you had to be prepared to provide for yourself for a period of time … landlines went down, there was no communication for a few days.”

Operators spent the contest hours scrolling through frequencies they’re licensed on, either on the hunt for someone requesting contacts or camping on a given wavelength and asking for others to reach out, using the codes, “QRZ” or “CQ.”

At busier hours of the field day, that means dialing into a frequency, calling out, and hearing a cacophony and replies before asking one to repeat itself. Every other responder either waits on the line, or flocks to another channel where they try again.

The practice has plenty of technical challenges to boot. Weather, atmospheric conditions and competition for bandwidth threaten to disrupt a call, if not accounted for by the participants.

At 1 p.m. Saturday, those on the mic had seconds between each call. By 11 p.m., things had slowed to a quieter, slow scroll between bandwidths.

Bush said the payoff from all that work was a rush of its own.

“We’re struggling, right here, to connect to someone,” he said late Saturday night. “But then when you actually make a contact, it’s just like, ‘Success!’ There’s kind of a reward there, it’s just kind of exciting.”

Shortly before midnight Sunday morning, a conversation could be overheard between two men about a friend in Ukraine. Another operator in Italy spent much of the evening informing callers he was “not in the contest,” and instead shooting for distance, rather than quantity of communications.

With enough call outs of “Whiskey, Zero, Alpha, Romeo, Charlie,” (phonetic letters making up the WAARC’s unique call sign,) Bush reached one contest participant late Saturday night in east Texas which had already logged 800 contacts that day. Many of those happened through Morse code, rather than a microphone.

THURSDAY EDITION: The rodent from PA predicts 6 more weeks of winter, with a 40% success rate....

When All Else Fails: Amateur Radio Helps Rescue Lost Hiker

Editor's note: The following event took place on Sunday afternoon, December 11, 2022, and was told to ARRL News by Raul "Skip" Camejo, AC1LC, Public Information Coordinator for the ARRL New Hampshire Section.

The amateur radio repeater on the summit of Gunstock Mountain helped connect the lost hiker in a remote area of New Hampshire. The repeater is affiliated with New England Digital Emergency Communications Network, NEDECN.

A New Hampshire man and his dog went out for a day hike yesterday in the Belmont area of central New Hampshire. Things went well until his cell phone battery died. With darkness near and a prediction of snow, a leisurely day hike was quickly turning into a serious health and safety issue for the hiker.

Fortunately for him, he is also an amateur radio operator and brought along his digital mobile radio (DMR) handheld radio with him. With no cell phone capability, he made a call on the DMR New Hampshire statewide channel through the Gunstock (Mountain) DMR repeater, seeking assistance. His call was answered by Bill Barber, NE1B, who was monitoring the channel. The hiker asked Barber to call his wife, because he could not text or get "pinged" with his dead cell phone. Barber contacted the hiker's wife, and she was glad to hear that someone was in contact with him. Unfortunately, he did not know exactly where he was and believed he would have to walk through brush for an hour or more to get to a road.

His wife called the local police department, who began a search with their local fire department. Amateur radio was the only communication from about 4:30 to 6:30 PM. Barber was able to make contact with Rick Zach, K1RJZ, who lives closer to the search area, and was familiar with the area's snowmobile trails and roads. Zach coordinated communication between the responding police units and the lost radio operator on the New Hampshire Statewide talkgroup.

Police and fire units attempted to assist in the search by activating their sirens in different locations to try to obtain a location on the ham operator, but he was not able to hear them.

Another amateur radio operator, Chuck Cunningham, K1MIZ, was monitoring the events on Net Watch and noticed that the lost ham had accidentally changed channels. This information was passed along, and 2-meter DMR communication continued until the lost ham walked out to a road and was able to advise searchers of his location. The search and checkout ended successfully at 6:30 PM.

Thanks to the efforts of Bill Barber, NE1B (ARRL Life Member); Rick Zach, K1RJZ (ARRL member), and Chuck Cunningham, K1MIZ.

Barber listed some very important lessons learned from the incident:

Radio batteries last longer on DMR radios than on analog mode.

Even his wife had trouble with her cell phone coverage at home.

Monitor your local state DMR channel to help others nearby.

You may want to program 146.52 FM next to your state channel for signal strength direction finding if and when you're out of repeater range. Some hams still monitor 146.52 MHz simplex.

Stay on the primary channel until you know more hams are nearby to direction find your signal.

Hike with DMR. Network sites cover many areas of New England that do not have any cell service.

Hike with a flashlight.

And I would like to add one more item to the list. My son is one of the leaders of Pemigewasset Valley (New Hampshire) Search & Rescue Team and unfortunately responds to too many calls for lost hikers. One very important item that he stresses is that hikers file a "flight plan." Let someone who is not going on the hike know where you are going, how long you expect to be gone, and what communication equipment or capability you have with you. This also applies if you are going out hunting, fishing, or boating.

DARPA Awards Contracts for Long-Range ‘Liberty Lifter’ Flying Boat Design

The Pentagon’s emerging technologies research arm awarded two aviation companies contracts to develop seaplanes that would fly less than 100 feet off the ground and carry 90 tons of cargo more than 6,500 nautical miles, the Department of Defense announced Wednesday.
General Atomics, working with Maritime Applied Physics Corporation, and Aurora Flight Sciences, working with Gibbs & Cox and ReconCraft, each won contracts to start design and development work for a prototype Liberty Lifter cargo aircraft, according to the DARPA announcement.

“The planned Liberty Lifter demonstrator will be a large flying boat similar in size and capacity to the C-17 Globemaster III transport aircraft. Goals include takeoff and land in Sea State 4, sustained on-water operation up to Sea State 5, and extended flight close to the water in ground effect with the capability to fly out of ground effect at altitudes up to 10,000 feet above sea level,” reads a statement from DARPA.

“Liberty Lifter will use low-cost manufacturing akin to ship fabrication in building a highly innovative seaplane capable of meeting DoD heavy lift requirements [100+ tons] that operates with runway and port independence.”

General Atomics was awarded $8 million cost-plus-fixed-fee contract award in support of DARPA’s Liberty Lifter program in November for the work, the company announced Wednesday. Neither Aurora nor DARAPA included the award to the Boeing subsidiary in their statements.

In the first phase of the contract, the two teams will develop an aircraft that will carry two Marine Corps Amphibious Combat Vehicles or six 20-foot-long cargo containers at just above the wave tops using the physics of the ground effect. Fixed-wing aircraft flying close to the behave like they’re riding on a cushion of air between the ground. Airplanes experiencing ground effect use less energy to move through the air at high speeds and in turn take less energy to fly.

Both companies have taken different approaches to their designs.

“The General Atomics team has selected a twin-hull, mid-wing design to optimize on-water stability and seakeeping. It employs distributed propulsion using twelve turboshaft engines,” reads the DARPA release.
“Aurora Flight Sciences point-of-departure design more closely resembles a traditional flying boat, with a single hull, high wing and eight turboprops for primary propulsion.”

Now, the two teams will set out on an 18-month period to refine the operational concepts and design for each proposed Liberty Lifter.

WEDNESDAY EDITION: Frosty cold here on the island but no snow around thankfully.....It was nice to hear Mike- N1XW on the Fusion network linked together with a dozen repeaters together in MA, NH, and ME. ...Club connects with the International Space Station ....

A college student built an AI to help look for alien radio signals

The program already spotted potential evidence while combing through 150TB of data from 820 nearby stars.

Enlisting advanced artificial intelligence to help humans search for signs of extraterrestrial life may sound like the premise to a sci-fi novel. Nevertheless, it’s a strategy that investigators are increasingly employing to help expedite and improve their ET detection methodologies.

As a new paper published in Nature Astronomy reveals, one of the most promising advancements in the field may have arrived courtesy of a college undergrad.ver the past few years, Peter Ma, a third-year math and physics student at the University of Toronto, has worked alongside mentors at SETI and Breakthrough Listen—an initiative tasked with finding “technosignatures” of extraterrestrial intelligence—to develop a new neural network technique capable of parsing through massive troves of galactic radio signals in the pursuit of alien life. Narrowband radio frequencies have been hypothesized as a potential indicator for ETs, given they require a “purposely built transmitter,” according to SETI’s FAQ.

While prior search algorithms only identified anomalies as exactly defined by humans, Ma’s deep machine learning system allows for alternative modes of thinking that human-dictated algorithms often can’t replicate.

In an email to PopSci, Ma explains, “people have inserted components of machine learning or deep learning into search techniques to assist [emphasis theirs] with the search. Our technique is the search, meaning the entire process is effectively replaced by a neural network, it’s no longer just a component, but the entire thing.”

As Motherboard and elsewhere have recently noted, the results are already promising, to say the least—Ma’s system has found eight new signals of interest. What’s more, Ma’s deep learning program found the potential ET evidence while combing through 150TB of data from 820 nearby stars that were previously analyzed using classical techniques, but at the time determined to be devoid of anything worth further investigation.

According to Ma’s summary published on Monday, the college student previously found the standard supervised search models to be too restrictive, given that they only found candidates matching simulated signals they were trained on while unable to generalize arbitrary anomalies. Likewise, existing unsupervised methods were too “uncontrollable,” flagging anything with the slightest variation and “thus returning mostly junk.” By intermediately swapping weighted considerations during the deep learning program’s training, Ma found that he and his team could “balance the best of both worlds.”

TUESDAY EDITION: Had some cancer removed from my neck yesterday, they said lay low so you don't bust open up the stitches. Well that lasted a few hours with the dog using me as a playground, it took a half hour to stop the bleeding, damn if I was going to the ER for a stitch or two...so laying low today and playing on 10-20 meters today...In the modern world of smartphones and lightning fast internet, amateur (ham) radio operators still enjoy communicating over the radio by tapping telegraph keys just like the pioneers did in the earliest days of over-the-air communications.

Missouri S&T Amateur Radio Club to Celebrate 100 Years

The Missouri S&T Amateur Radio Club, W0EEE, at Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T), is gearing up for an early celebration of their 100 years. Club President Morgan Lyons, KI5SXY, said the station first went on the air in 1923 as the M.S.M Radio Club, broadcasting basketball games from the Jackling Gym on the grounds of the Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy (MSM).

"The FCC was not around in 1923, but we believe the original M.S.M Radio club used the call sign W9DUM," said Lyons. Then, between September 1937 and March 1938, W9EEE had been assigned to the M.S.M. Radio Club, and in September 1947, the M.S.M Radio club was assigned the call sign W0EEE and changed its name to the Missouri S&T Amateur Radio Club.

Missouri S&T Amateur Radio Club members operate from their shack. Photo courtesy of Missouri S&T Amateur Radio Club.

The club now has 20 active members and over 300 alumni that regularly visit to help support club activities.

The official date for the celebration in April has not been selected, but there will be an open house and tour of the club's radio shack, and a special event station.

The Missouri S&T Amateur Radio Club is an ARRL Affiliated Club. Students from the club regularly participate in the ARRL Collegiate Amateur Radio Program -- which provides networking opportunities for students and their college radio clubs.

 

MONDAY EDITION: I have a little surgery today that might slow me down for a day....looks like the coldest day in years is on the way this weekend....We had a nice turnout for Winter Field day at the club Saturday, about a dozen coming and going....If you have been listening on 3927 at night, I think it is time for a Go Fund Me page for  Bruce "Almighty"  to fund his anger and blood pressure issues. The man could argue with the Pope and continues to insist he is the channel master and all must bow to his wishes, and answer the question- yes or no....Speaking of 3927, I wonder if this group allowed Donnie-N4TAT to come?....

 

Amateur Radio Newsline Report

TELESCOPE LOGS A RECORD-BREAKING RADIO TRANSMISSION

NEIL/ANCHOR: We begin this week's report with a report of a record-breaking signal from a galaxy far, far away. Here's Graham Kemp VK4BB.

GRAHAM: Scientists have captured a faint radio signal from the most distant galaxy yet - a signal they believe created a chance to look back 8.8 billion years in time when the universe was 4.9 billion years old.

Arnab Chakraborty, a post-doctoral researcher at McGill University, said the signal was received at a "record-breaking distance."

A news release from McGill university said the signal, which was received by the Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope in India, had a wavelength called the 21 cm line.

The researchers credit a naturally occurring phenomenon known as gravitational lensing. When that happens, another galaxy that exists between the radio signal and the telescope bends the signal which magnifies it, enabling the telescope to detect it. Scientist Nirupam Roy at the Indian Institute of Science said this process shows great potential for further study of distant galaxies.

This is Graham Kemp VK4BB.

(CBS NEWS, MC GILL UNIVERSITY)



**
SILENT KEY: ARRL WESTERN PENNA SECTION TRAFFIC MGR, BOB KETZELL, KB3IN

NEIL/ANCHOR: Amateurs in Western Pennsylvania are grieving the loss of a valued friend, mentor and top traffic handler. For that story, we turn to Kevin Trotman N5PRE.

KEVIN: There was to be a final call and moment of silence for Bob Ketzell, KB3IN, on Friday evening, January 27th, at the start of the Western Pennsylvania Phone Traffic Net on 80 meters. Bob became a Silent Key on Tuesday, January 24th following a long illness.

According to his close friend, Eddie Misiewicz KB3YRU, Bob took great joy handling the daily Radiogram traffic on the National Traffic System in western Pennsylvania and serving as net control for the Western Pennsylvania Phone Traffic Net.

First licensed in 1961 as a junior in high school, Bob most recently had been Western Pennsylvania section traffic manager for the ARRL and the Western Pennsylvania representative for the 3rd Region Net Cycle 2 Traffic Net. A member of the Washington County Amateur Communications Club, he was a former ARES emergency coordinator for Washington County.

According to Eddie, Bob was well-known for his generosity as a mentor, having taught traffic-handling and Radiogram classes to fellow amateurs. He was a retired dispatch supervisor for the Washington County Department of Public Safety in Pennsylvania.

Eddie said of him: "Our next section traffic manager is going to have big shoes to fill. There will never be another Bob."

Bob was 76.

(EDDIE MISIEWICZ, K B 3 Y R U)

**
HAMS JOIN CELEBRATION OF WORLD RADIO DAY

NEIL/ANCHOR: A group of hams in Europe will be joining the on-air festivities in February recognizing the role radio can play as a tool of peace among nations. Andy Morrison K9AWM brings us that report.

ANDY: The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, known as UNESCO, declared World Radio Day to be a celebration of the contributions this communications medium can make towards peace. This year marks the 12th such World Radio Day on the 13th of February. Although there is a separate day set aside to mark World Amateur Radio Day later this spring, hams with the EA Digital Federation are celebrating the medium with several special event stations.

Operators plan to be on the air this year with special callsigns between Friday, the 10th and Monday the 13th of the month. The callsigns are AO (A OH) one through nine W-R-D. QSL cards will be available for any single contact and qualify the operator for the Radio Clubs of the World Award, EANET.

Meanwhile, on the commercial side of the spectrum in the US, KDKA News Radio in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is receiving the 2023 World Radio Day Award for US stations, as the country's oldest licensed broadcast station. Previous winners include 1010 WINS (TEN-TEN Wins) in New York City, college radio station WRHU at Hofstra University on Long Island, New York and the first winner, WTOP in Washington, DC.

This is Andy Morrison K9AWM.

(UNESCO, EA DIGITAL FEDERATION, WIA)

**
CUBESAT WILL USE INFLATABLE ANTENNA SYSTEM

NEIL/ANCHOR: Innovative antenna technology is being featured as part of a CubeSat project under way in Arizona. Jack Parker W8ISH gives us those details.

JACK: Students at the University of Arizona have finished their work on a CubeSat project that will be launched into low Earth orbit later this year. One of the innovations the CubeSat will use is inflatable antenna technology developed by one of the school's astronomy professors.

By striving to stay in a sun synchronous orbit around Earth, the small satellite, known as CatSat, will remain in daylight through most of the length of its mission. Its inflatable antenna system was developed by professor Christopher Walker, who serves as the team's science principal investigator. The inflatable antenna will be used for high bandwidth transmission. According to the website of Freefall Aerospace, where Walker developed the antenna, the system makes use of an ultra-lightweight inflatable structure that provides a large aperture high-gain antenna that can be deployed in orbit.

The CatSat's mission will also include detection of HF signals from amateur radio operators around the world through its use of a WSPR antenna. Those transmissions will be downlinked to a receiver at the school's Biosphere 2 facility on the Arizona campus. CatSat will also be collecting high-resolution images of Earth and providing data on the ionosphere.

The project is part of NASA's CubeSat Launch Initiative.

This is Jack Parker W8ISH.

(ARIZONA PUBLIC MEDIA, UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA)

**
SWISS STUDENTS' SATELLITE PREPARES FOR LAUNCH

NEIL/ANCHOR: An educational satellite built by Swiss students is being prepared for an important launch in February, as we learn from Jeremy Boot G4NJH.

JEREMY: With the help of a ham radio antenna donated by the Vaudois Amateur Radio Club, HB9MM, high school students in Switzerland will be learning how to download telemetry data and photos from a satellite they have helped build in a laboratory at Orbital Solutions in Monaco.

The RoseyCubesat-1 is the first educational satellite of its kind to be created through the company’s STEMSAT programme. Le Rosey is the name of the Swiss learning institute that the students attend. They will be able to send commands to the CubeSat to select telemetry and picture download or to switch it into its VU transponder mode so that amateurs around the world will be able to communicate over the small satellite. The downlink using BPSK and AX25 is on 436.825 MHz and when the transponder is enabled, its uplink will be on 145.850 MHz. The launch is expected to take place on the 14th February at the Vandenberg Space Force Base in California.

This is Jeremy Boot G4NJH.

**

AMSAT NEEDS NEW MANAGER FOR GRIDMASTER HEAT MAP

NEIL/ANCHOR: Are you a satellite enthusiast hoping to go for the big prize with your contacts? There's an opening at AMSAT for a capable volunteer who can help with an important tool for chasers. Sel Embee KB3TZD tells us what's involved.

SEL: AMSAT's Gridmaster Heat Map has served as an invaluable guide to grid-chasers using satellites, for those activating hams who need to be aware of which grids are in greatest need. AMSAT says in a recent weekly service bulletin that the map may be going away unless a replacement manager can be found.

Paul Overn, KEØPBR, will be stepping down after three years at the helm of the project in which he tracked grid rarity based on crowdsourced data from hams who updated him. Paul's Twitter feed, atgridmasterheat (@GridMasterHeat) displays a color-coded map of grid rarities ranging from green - the most common - to red, for rare.

The map plays an especially important role in the pursuit of AMSAT's prestigious GridMaster Award. This honor is conferred on any amateur around the world who works all 488 Maidenhead grid squares in the 48 contiguous United States via satellite and has those contacts confirmed in writing.

AMSAT is looking for a volunteer to assume Paul's post. The candidate should be capable of collecting crowdsourced data and transferring it to a spreadsheet or some other format and providing updates every week to satellite users.

For details visit www.amsat.org

This is Sel Embee KB3TZD.

(SEAN KUTZKO, KX9X)

**
VINTAGE RADIO MUSEUM REOPENING IN IRELAND

NEIL/ANCHOR: A beloved museum for fans of antique radio and gear is finally reopening its doors in Dublin. We have more details from Jeremy Boot G4NJH.

JEREMY: The doors are reopening at Ye Olde Hurdy Gurdy Museum, a vintage collection of radios and radio-related items housed in a Martello Tower near Dublin, Ireland. On the weekend of January 14th, the first visitors were able to step inside after the museum had been closed for two months for renovation work. Though the initial opening provided some limited access while the remainder of the work was completed, full access was expected to be available after January 21st.

The well-loved museum was opened by Pat Herbert in 2003 and the radio aficionado brought much of his collection to its displays. The museum continues to have the support of his family and friends following Pat's death in 2020 at the age of 83

The museum is the home of amateur radio station EIØMAR, which is operated by the Howth Martello Radio Group. There is more history to this museum than just the collection it holds: In the mid-19th century, the tower itself housed the first telegraphy station connecting Great Britain and Ireland. Lee de Forest, the pioneering radio scientist from the US, visited the tower in 1903 to conduct experiments in wireless telegraphy.

This is Jeremy Boot G4NJH.

(WIA, FACEBOOK, QRZ)

**
WORLD OF DX

In the world of DX, there's good news for Bouvet Island Dxpedition 3YØJ (Three Why Zero Jay) watchers: Despite earlier reports to the contrary, team members are operating /mm from the ship as they make their way to the island. Be listening for them using their home calls plus /mm using CW and SSB. Team co-leader Ken LA7GIA said the group has a dipole with capability of 17m and 20m.

Juan, LU8DBS, is on the air in his spare time as LU1ZV at Esperanza Base, Antarctica, IOTA number AN-016. Listen for him on 40, 20 and 10 metres where he is using SSB through to the end of January. In February, he will be adding CW and digital modes. Send QSLs direct to LU4DXU.

Be listening for Robson, PY6TV, who will be using CW and SSB with the callsign PT6D from Ilha da Mare, IOTA Number SA-023 from the 2nd to the 5th of February. QSL direct to his home call and see his QRZ.com page for PayPal details. Robson will upload his log to Club Log.

Adam, VK2YK, Chris, VK5FR, Ivan, VK5HS and a team of other VK hams will be using the callsign VK5TIL from Troubridge Island, IOTA number OC-139, on the 7th, 8th and 9th of February. They will operate CW, SSB and digital modes on various bands. QSL via MØOXO's OQRS, LoTW and eQSL.

Be listening for John, W5JON, who will be on the air as V47JA from St. Kitts, IOTA number NA-104, from the 31st of January to the 15th of February. He will be using SSB and FT8 on the HF bands and 6 metres. QSL via LoTW, or direct to W5JON.

(425 DX Bulletin)

**
STILL TIME TO PLAN FOR DXPEDITION BOOTCAMP

NEIL/ANCHOR: Speaking of chasing DX and DXpeditions, a group of amateurs is hosting a DXpedition bootcamp in the South Pacific offering the expertise of experienced ops to help those who hope to do it for real sometime. The station on Norfolk Island offers CW and SSB from 160m through 10m with dedicated stations for FT8 and 6m along with a variety of dipole and vertical antennas. A short drive from the DXpedition station is Mount Bates where interested operators can try their hand at a SOTA activation. Norfolk Island National Park is also adjacent to the DXpedition station. The camp will take place from March 17th to the 31st. For information about costs or other details, visit the website dxpeditionbootcamp - that's one word - dot net. Yes, meals are included.

(WIA, DXPEDITION BOOTCAMP)

**
KICKER: WHEN 'THANK YOU' IS A SPECIAL EVENT

ANCHOR: Finally, we end with a story about gratitude. There are lots of ways to say thank you of course but in amateur radio some gestures go beyond mere words or even certificates. Here's Ralph Squillace KK6ITB to tell us about a group of hams here in the US who turned a "thank you" into a special event.

RALPH: How exactly do you say thank you to your mentor, the ham who patiently answered your questions - all of them - helped with your studies, guided you with your shack, handled questions about on-air protocol and.....well, you name it. The simple answer is: you get on the air. For a group of radio operators in New England that translated into creating a special event thank you to their Elmers late last year. Using the callsign W1E/ELMER, six of them got on the air for a few days late last year, telling stories - and hearing stories - about those all-important hams who made a difference in their lives. In all, there were a little more than 300 QSOs, each one an audio thank-you card offered as a tribute.

However, the Elmer event doesn't end there. Two of the organizers, Bill W1FMX and Rich KB1FGC, know there are more stories out there and lots of thank yous to share. This year it will be happening again, starting on September 29th, and Rich hopes that hams everywhere - not just in New England - will join them on the air. So if you've been thinking about "why" and "how" of where you are now in amateur radio, now is the time for Rich to hear from you. His email address is in the text version of this week's newscast at arnewsline.org

FRIDAY EDITION: I was always waiting for this.....

Yaesu Radios Donated to ARRL to Inspire Visitors and Young Hams

There are two new Yaesu transceivers in use at ARRL Headquarters in Newington, Connecticut. They arrived via a generous donation from Yaesu USA.

The Yaesu FTDX101MP transceiver is a welcome addition to Studio 1 in W1AW, the Hiram Percy Maxim Memorial Station.

The company has donated an FTDX101MP and FTDX10, both HF/50 MHz transceivers. In arranging the donation, Yaesu Vice President, Sales and Credit Gary Doshay, KN6APR, urged that the radios be used by ARRL "to educate and assist your visitors and especially young enthusiasts for ham radio."

"We appreciate the value that having this equipment available for members and visitors to see and explore will provide," said ARRL Director of Operations Bob Naumann, W5OV. "These are two of the top three performing transceivers on the Sherwood list," he added.

Congress Introduces Bill to Eliminate Amateur Radio Private Land Use Restrictions

The U.S. House of Representatives is considering legislation that would modify regulations that currently restrict amateur radio operators from installing or operating antennas on their own property.

According to a post on the ARRL website, H.R. 9670 would “eliminate private land use restrictions that prohibit, restrict, or impair the ability of an Amateur Radio Operator from operating and installing amateur station antennas on property subject to the control of the Amateur Radio Operator.”

FCC regulations implemented in the late 1990s currently preempt private land for exterior communications facilities and equipment that could impair television broadcast signals or other licensed transmissions.

The bill was introduced in the House just before Christmas by Congressman Bill Johnson (OH-6). Previous attempts filed with the FCC by the ARRL (the National Association of Amateur Radio) to overturn the restriction were rejected, with the FCC stating that “such relief would have to come from Congress.”

Read the complete text of the ARRL posting about the recently introduced bill to lift land use restrictions on amateur radio operators.

Read the text of H.R. 9670.

Mobile App Available to Navigate 2023 Orlando HamCation

Orlando HamCation® is February 10 - 12, 2023, and hosts the ARRL Southeastern Division Convention. In partnership with HamCation, ARRL's free mobile app is available to help attendees navigate the large event, which is held at the Central Florida Fairgrounds and Expo Park.

The free ARRL Events app is now available and already includes HamCation's full program, so attendees can browse and schedule forums, preview the extensive list of exhibitors, and find affiliated events. During the event, attendees can use other app features to follow the hourly prize drawings and grand prize packages, and browse building and site maps.

While returning app users do not have to re-register to use the app, they will be prompted to complete a simple registration to view each new event. Attendees are also encouraged to tap on the MyProfile icon in the app to add their name and call sign, email address, and any additional information they would like to share with other HamCation guests. Additionally, the MyBadge icon displays a QR code of your event badge that can be scanned by another attendee or exhibitor using the Scan Badge icon - instantly connecting shared contact information with other hams at the event.

The app is available for Apple and Android smart devices, or access the web browser version which is optimized for nearly any browser or other type of mobile phone or tablet. Visit your app store to download the app (search "ARRL Events") or access the links available on the ARRL Expo web page. If you're reading this article on a mobile device, click here to be redirected to the appropriate app store, or redirected to the web browser version (www.tripbuildermedia.com/apps/arrl).

For more information, please visit these official websites:

Orlando HamCation www.hamcation.com
ARRL at Orlando HamCation www.arrl.org/expo

DX news

This week's bulletin was made possible with information provided by GU4YOX, The Daily DX, 425 DX News, DXNL, Contest Corral from QST and the ARRL Contest Calendar and WA7BNM web sites. Thanks to all.

BOUVET, 3Y. A large group of operators will be QRV as 3Y0J. Activity will be on 160 to 10 meters using CW, SSB and FT8. QSL via M0OXO.

SRI LANKA, 4S. Peter DC0KK and Wolfgang DK9DR will be QRV as 4S7KKG and 4S7DRG, respectively, from the Sri Lanka Broadcast SLBC transmitting site from January 29 to February 7. Activity will be in their spare time on 80 to 10 meters using mostly SSB with FT8 and FT4. QSL to home calls.

TIMOR-LESTE, 4W. Satoshi, JH2EUV is QRV as 4W/JH2EUV. Activity of late has been on 17, 15, and 10 meters using FT8. QSL via LoTW.

TOGO, 5V. Filippo, IK4ZHH is QRV as 5V22FF. Activity is on 40 to 10 meters using mainly CW with some SSB. QSL to Club Log.

KENYA, 5Z. Rick, M0LEP is QRV as 5Z4/M0LEP from Nairobi until January 30. Activity is in his spare time on 20 to 6 meters using CW and SSB. QSL to home call.

LESOTHO, 7P. Yuris, YL2GM is QRV as 7P8WW until February 4. Activity is on 160 to 10 meters using CW, SSB, RTTY, and FT8. QSL via YL2GN.

THE GAMBIA, C5. Andre, ON7YK is QRV as C5YK from Bijilo until February 24. Activity is on 20 to 10 meters using all modes. QSL direct to home call.

WALLIS AND FUTUNA ISLANDS, FW. Jean-Gabriel, F4CIX, is QRV as FW1JG and expects to be here until January 2024. He is active on 40 to 6 meters using SSB and FT8. QSL via LoTW.

FRENCH GUIANA, FY. Contest station FY5KE will be QRV as TO1A in the CQ World Wide 160-Meter CW and French CW contests. QSL via operators' instructions.

JERSEY, GJ. Bob, GU4YOX will be QRV as MJ5E in the CQ World Wide 160-Meter CW contest. QSL direct to home call.

LIECHTENSTEIN, HB0. Operators DL1MGB, DL2JRM, DL3DXX and DL7CX plan to be QRV as HB0DX in the CQ World Wide 160-Meter CW contest as a Multi/Single entry. Outside the contest they are active as HB0/home calls. QSL HB0DX via DL3DXX and all others to home calls.

PANAMA, HP. Members of the Panama Canal Amateur Radio Association will be QRV as 3E30PCARA from February 1 to 28 to celebrate the club's 30th anniversary. QSL direct.

ALASKA, KL. Brandon, KL7BSC will be QRV from Denali State Park, POTA K-1641, during Winter Field Day. QSL via LoTW.

ANTARCTICA. Juan, LU8DBS is QRV as LU1ZV until February from the Argentine Esperanza Antarctica Base located at Hope Bay, Trinity Peninsula while on work assignment. Activity is in his spare time on 40, 20, and 10 meters using SSB, and soon with CW and FT8. QSL via LU4DXU.

PAPUA NEW GUINEA, P2. Alberto, P29LL has been QRV on 20 meters using CW around 0800z, and then around 1400z. QSL via EA7FTR.

SEYCHELLES, S7. Kazik, DL2SBY is QRV as S79/DL2SBY until February 4. Activity is on 160 to 10 meters using some CW, FT8, and possibly SSB. QSL to home call. In addition, Peter, G4HSO will be QRV as S79/G4HSO from February 1 to 21 as a holiday operation from three different locations. QSL via LoTW.

ST. KITTS AND NEVIS, V4. John, W5JON will be QRV as V47JA from St, Kitts, Calypso Bay, IOTA NA-104, from January 31 to February 15. Activity will be on 160 to 6 meters using SSB and FT8. QSL direct to home call.

CANADA, VE. Special event station VB3CAM50 will be QRV from February 1 to 15 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the city of Cambridge in Ontario. QSL via operator's instructions.

MEXICO, XE. Garcia, XE1CIC will be QRV from Bicentenario State Park, POTA XE-0252, on January 28 and 29. Activity will be on 20 to 10 meters using SSB. QSL direct to home call.

ALBANIA, ZA. Ron, NS5K is QRV as ZA15K from Lushnje until November 15 while performing missionary work. Activity is in his spare time on 40 and 20 meters. QSL via operator's instructions.

THIS WEEKEND ON THE RADIO. The CQ World Wide 160-Meter CW Contest, Winter Field Day, BARTG RTTY Sprint, NCCC RTTY Sprint, QRP 80-Meter CW Fox Hunt, NCCC CW Sprint, K1USN Slow Speed CW Test, REF CW Contest and the UBA DX SSB Contest will certainly keep contesters busy this upcoming weekend.

THURDAY EDITION: I hear lots of chatter about Winter Field Day, let see if they show up on the airwaves this weekend...Damn, West Virginia is scary....Having solving and bankrolling all the problems in the world, NASA is funding a space plane that will fly on the Saturn moon of Titan.....A reliable battery backup protects your electronics in more ways than one.

Tesla wants to make humanoid robots. Here’s their competition.

From Boston Dynamics to Sophia, the robotics field has been teeming with new inventions, each of them both talented and flawed in their own ways.

During Tesla’s AI day last week, Elon Musk unmasked his next creation to come: “friendly” Tesla robots that can perform dangerous, repetitive, and boring tasks like fetching tools for repairs or getting groceries.  

Further dampening the hype for Musk’s robot is the fact that the self-driving system which powers Tesla’s cars, and theoretically would power this new robot, has recently been under federal investigation for crashing into emergency vehicles. 

Taking into account that Musk is known for being a showman over being a realist, you probably shouldn’t hold your breath for him to deliver this promised product on time. 

Musk is not alone in his ambitions. Many companies and universities have been working on robots that can take on human-supporting tasks, from monitoring health, to going on rescue missions, to just being a a butler. But, there’s still a wide gap between the types of robot assistants portrayed in movies and TV versus what is possible right now with current research. 

Boston Dynamics 

Boston Dynamics, arguably the leader in humanoid robotics, has been testing their tech for almost a decade. The company, previously owned by SoftBank, was acquired by Hyundai Motor Group in June. Their humanoid Atlas robots have undergone several trials to test their agility and motion in different environments. Atlas was first introduced to the public in 2013. Recently, the robot managed to master parkour. Atlas is just under five foot tall, weighs around 196 pounds, and can run at speeds up to 5.6 mph. These robots are still just for research and are not available commercially. However, one of their dog-like robots, Spot, is available for purchase at a ticket price of $74,500.

Agility Robotics has their own version of a humanoid work bot called Digit. In 2019, Agility Robotics teamed up with automaker Ford Motor to put Digit to work. Digit has working and adjustable arms and legs that helps it walk around, pick up objects and move them. It uses LiDAR and other sensors to navigate. Now, Ford is testing whether Digit in combination with Ford’s self-driving car can collaborate to make deliveries.  

SoftBank 

SoftBank’s Pepper, introduced in 2014, was one of the first social humanoid robots. At one point, it was available for purchase if you have $2,000 to spare. Pepper has the features of a small child, can mimic upper-body human movements, and can recognize human emotion and pick up non-verbal social cues, creating an illusion of understanding, or what some developers call artificial empathy. Despite stints at the Smithsonian and Buddhist temples, the production of Pepper was put on halt this year, reported The Verge.  

Hanson Robotics

Hanson Robotics is responsible for creating the uncannily human-like robot Sophia, which came on the scene in 2016. Reuters reported in January that the Hong Kong-based company would start mass-producing four robot models sometime this year, including Sophia. Founder David Hanson told Reuters that these robots could be helpful in healthcare, retail, and airline settings. 

HONORABLE MENTIONS

Even though not all humanoid robots can share the spotlight equally, some are good at specific tasks while others are important as proof-of-concepts. The neural network-run Japanese robot Altar is nothing more than a complex inflatable air dancer, but it provided an example of how coordination and moving in harmony with humans is not an easy thing to teach robots. 

Stanford’s OceanOne diving robot was able to retrieve a vase from an underwater shipwreck, hypothetically reducing the need for people to go on dangerous diving missions. However, this aquatic humanoid diver still needs humans to direct it virtually. Samsung has been keen on making at-home robotic health aides. But in practice, these health-monitoring robots work less like Big Hero 6’s Baymax, and more like a Roomba with a Life Alert button. 

Just how big is a moose.....

WEDNESDAY EDITION: New England's version of the Friendly Bunch on 3928 was lively yesterday afternoon, they are doing fine business work promoting ham radio and friendliness. You can even ask for an audio check without getting yelled at. The most important breakthrough in this group is the all new persona of Iron Mike- XW. Since he started chewing the gummy bears medicinal dope, he is amazing, I bet they will even let him back in the Chinese  Restaurant next to HRO and remove the restraining order placed by the waiter. Nice to hear Ranger Rick and Cape Cod Arthur, and the usual friendly bunch.....The Doomsday Clock moves to 90 seconds to midnight, signaling more peril than ever...Half the people who buy smart appliances are smart enough to not connect them. Or they're afraid if they do connect them, the appliances will be smarter than them

Bryan Amateur Radio Club to host annual Winter Field Day exercises from Jan. 28-29

BRYAN, Texas — The Bryan Amateur Radio Club will be hosting its annual Winter Field Day exercises on Saturday, Jan. 28 and Sunday, Jan. 29, according to a press release from the organization.

According to the news release, the exercises are meant to serve as a way to prepare for emergencies when extreme weather conditions such as snow, ice, or freezing temperatures may disrupt regular communications operations.

The exercises will be held at Earl Graham Post 159 American Legion at 101 Waco St. in Bryan, and will serve as an opportunity for the public to communicate with other participating clubs across the country via radio.

Falmouth Amateur Radio (Cape Cod) Association To Join Winter Field Day

The Falmouth Amateur Radio Association will take part in the nationwide Winter Field Day event, a communications exercise that allows amateur radio operators to practice portable emergency communications in winter environments. Freezing temperatures, snow, ice and other hazards present unique operational challenges for successful emergency communications, and the event helps increase the level of preparedness for disasters and improve operational skills in subpar conditions.

The group will operate from Marina Park in Falmouth using its emergency communications trailer. Operations run from 2PM Saturday, January 28, through 2PM Sunday, January 29. The public is invited to stop by and learn more about amateur radio.

 

TUESDAY EDITION: 5 inches of wet snow but the driveway is clear and open for business...I still need to get one end of the G5RV up in the air before the Weekend Field Day at the club, the wx is not helping.

It has to to be a no-code Tech.....

MONDAY EDITION: CAARA will be operating Winter Field Day at the club facility. We will run  the building on a generator for heat and batteries for all the radios. The plan is to run two stations, one using the 10-20 meter beam on SSB and the other on the G5RV on 40 running cw. A cookout for food and the whole event is just for fun....

Winter Field Day 2023

Winter Field Day (WFD), sponsored by the Winter Field Day Association, is coming again. This year, the dates are January 28 and 29. Radio clubs around the country are activating for this event. Complete rules can be found on the WFD website, at Home - Winter Field Day. Combining this with ARRL's yearlong event, Volunteers On the Air, is a great way to make contacts that count for both activities and get new operators on the air.

WFD is a communications exercise and is held annually on the last full weekend in January. It can be worked from the comfort of your home or in a remote location. You can participate by yourself or get your friends, family, or whole club involved. WFD is open to participants worldwide. Amateur radio operators may use frequencies on the HF, VHF, or UHF bands, and are free to use any mode that can faithfully transmit the required exchange intact. Like the ARRL Field Day, bonus points are earned in several ways, including for using non-commercial power sources, operating from remote locations, making satellite contacts, and more.

The Winter Field Day Association passionately believes that ham radio operators should practice portable emergency communications in winter environments, as the potential for freezing temperatures, snow, ice, and other hazards present unique operational concerns. WFD is formatted to help increase your level of preparedness for disasters and improve your operational skills in subpar conditions.

I believe this is NE1Z of 3910 fame.....

Amateur Satellite FalconSAT-3 Nears Reentry

Many amateur radio operators and satellite watchers have been predicting the date and time of reentry for FalconSAT-3 (FS-3). While all reentry predictions are something of a guessing game due to the large number of variables affecting the upper atmosphere, it is certain that the end for FS-3 will be coming very soon, possibly the week of January 16 - 21, 2023.

Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation (AMSAT) Board Member and FS-3 control operator, Mark Hammond, N8MH, said he will try to have the satellite operational for its final hours. The satellite has only been available for approximately 24 hours each weekend due to weak batteries.

The FalconSAT-3 satellite. [Photo courtesy of AMSAT]

FalconSAT-3 was built in 2005 and 2006 by cadets and faculty in the Space Systems Research Center at the US Air Force Academy (USAFA) in Colorado Springs, Colorado. It is the fourth in a series of small satellites designed, built, and operated there as part of a capstone course, which brings together about 30 cadets each year from several different academic departments.

Nearly 700 cadets at the USAFA obtained their amateur radio licenses as part of training to operate FalconSAT-3 and other USAFA satellites. They have taken that knowledge, understanding, and value of amateur radio into their Air Force service and industry. Since FalconSAT-3, the USAFA Astronautics Department has built and operated one additional satellite and has two more queued for launch. The space operations curriculum and the ground station are being rebuilt and configured for these new space assets.

Since its launch on an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral in March 2007, the satellite has been through three mission phases. The first phase was operation of the science payloads. The second phase was used as a tool for training cadets in the space operations squadron, students in undergraduate space training in California, and graduate students at the Air Force Institute of Technology. The satellite's third phase was an on-orbit resource for amateur radio and amateur-satellite services operation managed by AMSAT.

Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation, AMSAT, logo; blue text with a red graphical globeFor amateur radio service the downlink is at 435.103 MHz transmitting 1 W into a quarter-wave whip antenna. The uplink is at 145.840 MHz and the receiving antenna is a quarter-wave whip antenna on the opposite side of the satellite. All UHF and S-band equipment on National Telecommunications and Information Administration licensed frequencies has been disabled. The VHF receiver is very sensitive. Modulation is 9600 bps GMSK for the uplink and downlink. The broadcast call sign is PFS3-11, and the BBS callsign is PFS3-12, Unproto APRS via PFS3-1.

The core avionics were designed and built by Mark Kanawati, N4TPY, and Dino Lorenzini, KC4YMG at SpaceQuest, and have performed remarkably well for nearly 16 years in orbit. Jim White, WD0E, was the lead engineer for FalconSAT-3 at the USAFA and managed the design, construction, testing, and early operations of the satellite.

The success of FalconSAT-3 is an excellent example of how amateur radio can be integrated into the curriculum of an education institution for the benefit of the students and the amateur radio service.

-- Thanks to Sasha Timokhov, VE3SVF; Jean Marc Momple, 3B8DU; Mark Hammond, N8MH; AMSAT Operations, and AMSAT News for the information contained in this story.

That Elusive First Contact

I've been involved in ham radio in one way or another since my early teens. I used to go to the local club meetings of the Spokane "Dial Twisters." As a teen, however, I was unable to learn the Morse code. I tried tapes but would memorize the tapes before leaning enough of the code. In retrospect, what I needed was someone to practice with, but nobody offered, and I didn't know at the time to ask.

Fast-forward to 1983 and my first duty assignment in California. A newfound friend with similar interests told me of a local class for novices and invited me to go. About three weeks later I passed the Morse code test. (I had someone to practice with), and the only major hurdle was overcome. I don't think I studied at all for the written but I aced it easily; after all, I'd been reading the handbook for at least five years!

I don't remember how long it took, but sometime later I get the call KB6AOL; yeah, it would be funny to have that call today. At any rate, at the time I didn't own a radio, and while I had access to the club station, I had other things on my mind so I left California without making a single contact.

When I went home on leave I spent most of the month building a forty meter QRP transceiver from a combination of articles in QST and the handbook. I think I used the tuna tin two transmitter and one of the mountaineer series receivers along with various other things.

I strung up some wire, did a quick review of the code, and called CQ a few times, but, as might be expected when one combines no experience, 200 milliwatts, a direct conversion receiver, and a substandard antenna in an urban environment, no real results were obtained. The transceiver eventually became parts for other, more pressing, projects. I still have the audio filter though; it's in my SW receiver

After returning from Germany I bought an Eico 753 at a yard sale and tried hooking up some wire antennas, but my code was too rusty and my interests were being pulled strongly in other directions. KB6AOL had never made a contact; I let my ticket lapse....

....until now.

A recent need for a kindler gentler morning wakeup led me to construct a one-transistor FM broadcast transmitter so my alarm clock would play streaming audio instead of nasty broadcast FM. That project woke up something else, however, the thrill I get from building RF projects.

A short diversion into part 15 experiments was interrupted by the realization that I could just get a new ham ticket. A few phone calls later I was scheduled to take elements one, two, and three the following Saturday.

Computers make studying Morse code a LOT easier, I managed to learn enough in that week to pass the code test both ways, i.e. 25+ straight copy and seven or more questions right. The only thing necessary for me to pass the other elements was read every question, yes, all 900 of them, once.

Less than a week later, on the day of the power outage no less, my call showed up in the database, KC8YGZ, that's a mouthful no matter what mode you say it in. The following day, my FT817 showed up at the door. By the evening, the power was restored, the batteries were charging and I was futzing with some hastily made dipoles. The following afternoon, I chased down the mailman to get my LDG Z11 kit, built it that evening and by 10pm Saturday night I was sending out a signal on 40 meters.

....sort of....

Several hours later I was hoarse, metaphorically that is; my CQs went unanswered. To make matters worse, I'd call CQ only to hear someone else calling CQ on the same frequency. Much faster than me of course; no point in trying to answer. They didn't hear my CQ in the first place, and although I knew they were calling CQ, I sure couldn't copy the call.

Well, of course, nobody could hear me. After all, I only have five Watts, and my antennas are substandard. This calls for (drum roll please) ANTENNA EXPERIMENTATION!!! Well, for the next few days I tried dipoles, long wires, the rain gutter, verticals made of this that and the other thing, I even loaded up the window frames. I tried almost every stealth antenna trick I could find on the net. I live in a first floor apartment, so I must use a stealth technique. To be clear, I am hearing people, and in fact, there hasn't been a significant variation in my ability to receive. The full length, but bent, forty meter dipole seems to work about as well as anything I can get away with putting up outside, at least on receive.

After much reading about the challenges and successes of others I settled on a couple of antennas that "should" work, built them carefully enough so that they would work without the tuner on at least some portion of the band and sat down to focus on making a contact.

Well, let me tell ya, after you call CQ and your own call about seven hundred and fifty times you get really bored and start to send too fast. Yes I tried listening for others calling CQ, but someone would always beat me to answering, or, more often, they were sending too fast for me.

I felt it best to hang out on the novice bands as that should be where slow CW ought to be tolerated, and besides, I'm trying to live that missed novice experience.

So I'm sending my CQ in a very blas' manner and out of nowhere, holy cow, someone starts to transmit as soon as I stop and it sounds like they might be talking to me. I copy "something something somethng DE WJ0C WJ0C something." I wasn't sure, was he talking to me? All of a sudden I got very very nervous, and simply sent WJ0C WJ0C DE KC8YGZ KC8YGZ. At least I think that's what I sent; I might have made some mistakes. After I stop, here comes a flood of code. I started copying, but it's too fast; I get flustered, Lost. I got something of the QTH, but didn't here my own call anywhere. He stops, was he talking to me; I still don't know. I copied hardly anything of what he sent and if he wasn't talking to me, well, I didn't know what to send, I panicked, froze, right there. Yes, I'm a grown man, and yes I panicked about something so trivial. Anyway, I waited a minute for something else and then just started calling CQ again, this time much more slowly.

I tried for several more hours moving between 7110 and around 7040, but no more contacts or "possible contacts" where had.

Jim, if you were talking to me, I apologize for not giving you much of a conversation.

It's been almost thirty years since I first became excited about ham radio, and I still haven't made that first HF contact. I have no intentions of giving up. I might try building a fifty wattish tube PA, or, what the heck, just getting my hands on a more powerful transmitter. But ultimately, I want to succeed with low power because building is what I enjoy, and low power stuff is far more approachable.

So, if you hear my anemic CQ on 7110, could you perhaps send a quick email to KC8YGZ@planetp.org saying "Daryl, I heard your CQ from [fill in your QTH]". At least that way I'd have some idea of how far my signal was reaching. The way it stands now, it looks like I might get my extra ticket before I ever make a single HF contact. I'll be taking element four in September.

You can be sure I'll be asking for a systematic call change, at least that way if Jim was talking to me, I might get a second chance.

73
Daryl
KC8YGZ

FRIDAY EDITION: No snow here, just rain....HAMs are the only available channel when official communication modes fail, says amateur radio activist , true over there but not here in the Northeast. Times have changed, ham radio is now a hobby, a great one, but not the savior of the planet in an emergency.....Microalgae could be the future of sustainable superfood in a rapidly changing world, study finds, good thing for China not me....

A little chilly here but thinking about a Vespa...

Amateur Radio ‘Winter Field Day’ later this month will demonstrate science, skill and service

The event is open to the public and all are encouraged to attend.

WHARC members will set up temporary stations in the VFW hall to make contacts with other amateur radio operators around the world for 24 hours. Members of the public are welcome to visit between 2 p.m. and 11 p.m. on Saturday and between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Sunday.

For more than 100 years, amateur radio — also called ham radio — has allowed people from all walks of life to experiment with electronics and communications techniques, as well as provide a free public service to their communities during a disaster or emergency, all without needing a cell phone or the Internet.

Winter Field Day demonstrates ham radio’s ability to work reliably under any conditions from almost any location and create an independent communications network.

“It’s easy for anyone to pick up a computer or smartphone, connect to the Internet and communicate, with no knowledge of how the devices function or connect to each other,” Larry Maleszewski, WHARC Vice President, said.

“Hams can literally throw a wire in a tree for an antenna, connect it to a battery-powered transmitter and communicate halfway around the world,” WHARC President Jim Miller said. “In today’s electronic do-it-yourself (DIY) environment, ham radio remains one of the best ways for people to learn about electronics, physics, meteorology and numerous other scientific disciplines. In addition, amateur radio is a huge asset to any community during disasters or emergencies if the standard communication infrastructure goes down.”

Anyone may become a licensed amateur radio operator. There are more than 725,000 licensed hams in the United States, as young as 9 and as old as 100. And with clubs such as West Hudson Amateur Radio Club, it’s easy for anybody to get involved right here in the area around Kearny, Harrison, and East Newark.

WHARC was founded by local amateur radio operators in 2021 and has events, in person, and on the air every month. The club welcomes anyone with an interest in radio and electronics to join, regardless of whether they currently have an Amateur Radio license.

For more information about WHARC or Amateur Radio, visit www.wharc.org or www.arrl.org/what-is-ham-radio.

Photo of Bob- W1GWU at the beginning of his career in radio

What is a mayday signal, who uses it, and how was it invented?

Mayday: it's the international signal for an emergency made by planes and boats which use radio communications, which was recently used on Qantas flight QF144 from Auckland to Sydney, which ended up landing safely.
Airservices Australia, a government-owned organisation responsible for the management of Australia's skies, describes such a call as an indication "an aircraft is in grave and imminent danger and requires immediate assistance".
But the history of the mayday call dates back to 1920s England.
While SOS had been used to signal an emergency via morse code, with the increase in air travel it was less practical to use over radio.
Frederick Stanley Mockford came up with a new word for signalling an emergency: "mayday".
He was in charge of radio at Croydon Airport near London.
Firefighters and police calls also use the word.
However, if there is an urgent issue but not a mayday, another signal can be used.
"PAN-PAN" from the French panne, means "a breakdown", and also stands for possible assistance needed.
Examples of PAN situations include a medical emergency or faulty instrument.


Sponsor: Augusta ARA
Date: Feb 11 2023
Time: 9:00 AM (Walk-ins allowed)
Contact: Joseph G. Devonshire
(207) 549-0061
Email: trainbee@aol.com
VEC: ARRL/VEC
Location: Le Club Calumet
334 West River Rd
Augusta ME 04330

Not long after the Boat Anchor Hamfest will be the Maine State Convention
sponsored by the Androscoggin Amateur Radio Club. This State Hamfest and
Convention will convene March 24th & 25th at the Ramada Inn just off Exit 86 in
Lewiston. For more information please visit
http://www.w1npp.org/pages/MEConvention2023.html
You will also want to pencil in HamXposition on your calendar. HamXposition is
the New England Convention held in Marlborough, MA. The 2023 Dates will be
August 25, 26, 27 at the Best Western Royal Plaza Hotel. Hope to see you at
Northeast's Premiere Amateur Radio Convention!

Ham radio operators 'still a thing' in this advanced technological world

FOND DU LAC, Wis. (CBS 58) -- In today's techie world, radio operators are in it more for the hobby rather than necessity. Even still, the National Association for Amateur Radio estimates there are two thousand clubs throughout the country and more than half a million ham amateurs.   VIDEO

They use this kind of frequency spectrum for various purposes of communication, including emergency situations like weather events and cases of missing persons.

The Fond du Lac Amateur Radio Club has its free-standing meeting the second Monday of every month. If you're interested in attending the meeting or maybe even getting your own radio operator license, just send an email to backstagelive@gmail.com or click here.

MONDAY EDITION: A Las Vegas gentleman's club which claims to be the biggest strip club in the world has taken a leap into the future with a giant robotic suit to be donned by security...Russia is holding back on using its most advanced fighter jets over Ukraine because it's scared they will get shot down, UK intel says ...

HAMS YOU MIGHT KNOW 

 K1TP- Jon....Editor of As The World Turns....
KA1BXB-Don...Regular on 3928 afternoons....just don't mention politics to him, please!
WB1ABC- Ari..Bought an amp and now we can here him on 75 meters, worships his wife, obsessed with Id'ing
N1BOW-Phil...Retired broadcast engineer, confused and gullible, cheap, only uses singl ply toilet paper
KB1OWO- Larry...Handsome Fellow ,only cuts lawn in August, plows snow the rest in Jackman, Maine
W1GEK- Big Mike....Nearfest Cook, big motor home, electronics software engineer ...
AA1SB- Neil...Living large traveling the country with his girlfriend...loves CW
N1YX- Igor....peddles quality Russian keys, software engineer
K1BGH...Art.....Restores cars and radio gear, nice fella...
N1XW.....Mike-easy going, Harley riding kind of guy!
K1JEK-Joe...Easy going, can be found at most ham flea market ...Cobra Antenna builder..
KA1GJU- Kriss- Tower climbing pilot who cooks on the side at Hosstrader's...
W1GWU-Bob....one of the Hosstrader's original organizers, 75 meter regular, Tech Wizard!!!
K1PV- Roger....75 meter regular, easy going guy...
W1XER...Scott....easy going guy, loves to split cordwood and hunt...
KB1VX- Barry- the picture says it all, he loves food!
KC1BBU- Bob....the Mud Duck from the Cape Cod Canal, making a lot of noise.
W1STS- Scott...philosopher, hat connoisseur,
KB1JXU- Matthew...75 meter regular...our token liberal Democrat out of VT
K1PEK-Steve..Founder of Davis-RF....my best friend from high school 
K9AEN-John...Easy going ham found at all the ham fests
K1BQT.....Rick....very talented ham, loves his politics, has designed gear for MFJ...
W1KQ- Jim-  Retired Air Force Controller...told quite a few pilots where to go!
N1OOL-Jeff- The 3936 master plumber and ragchewer...
K1BRS-Bruce- Computer Tech of 3936...multi talented kidney stone passing ham...
K1BGH- Arthur, Cape Cod, construction company/ice cream shop, hard working man....
W1VAK- Ed, Cape Cod, lots of experience in all areas, once was a Jacques Cousteus body guard....
K1BNH- Bill- Used to work for a bottled gas company-we think he has been around nitrous oxide to long
W1HHO- Cal...3941 group
K1MPM- Pete...3941 group
WA1JFX- Russell...3941 group .

SILENT KEYS

Silent Key N1IOM- 3910 colorful regular
Silent Key WS1D- Warren- "Windy" - Bullnet
Silent Key KMIG-Rick....75 Meter Regular....teaches the future of mankind, it's scary!
Silent Key Neil -K1YPM .....a true gentleman
Silent Key K1BXI- John.........Dr. Linux....fine amateur radio op ....wealth of experience...
Silent KeyVA2GJB- Graham...one of the good 14313 guys back in the day.
Silent Key K1BHV- David...PITA
Silent Key W1JSH- Mort...Air Force man
Silent Key K1MAN--Glen....PITA
Silent KeyKB1CJG-"Cobby"- Low key gent can be found on many of the 75 meter nets.........
Silent KeyWB1AAZ- Mike, Antrim, NH, auto parts truck driver-retired
Silent KeyWB1DVD- Gil....Gilly..Gilmore.....easy going, computer parts selling, New England Ham..
Silent Key W1OKQ- Jack....3936 Wheeling and Dealing......keeping the boys on there toes....
Silent Key W1TCS- Terry....75 meter regular, wealth of electronic knowledge...
Silent Key WIPNR- Mack....DXCC Master, worked them all!.. 3864 regular for many years...
Silent Key WILIM- Hu....SK at 92... 3864 regular for many years...
Silent Key N1SIE- Dave....Loves to fly
Silent Key:N1WBD- Big Bob- Tallest ham, at 6'10", of the 3864 group
Silent Key: W1FSK-Steve....Navy Pilot, HRO Salesman, has owned every radio ever built!
Silent Key: W4NTI-Vietnam Dan....far from easy going cw and ssb op on 14275/313
Silent Key:K1FUB-Bill- Loved ham radio....